A British traveller forced to quarantine for 10 days in a Heathrow hotel on his return to the UK claims he has moved room twice due to a rodent infestation.
Anthony, 25, who did not want to give a surname, said he has seen an animal in his room on two occasions.
He told Sky News: “It’s hell. It’s shocking. It’s a health & safety hazard… The hotel has to be shut down.”
Anthony is paying £1,750 to stay at government-approved Mercure Heathrow Hotel on his return from a visit to Brazil, a ‘red list’ country.
He claims staff have apologised, offered him free beer, but no refund.
In a statement, Mercure Hotels said: “An external pest control professional has checked the hotel and concluded no evidence of pest activity. We take complaints such as this very seriously.
“The safety of all our guests and staff members is of the upmost importance to us and continues to be our number one focus.
“The hotel continues to abide by all quarantine guidelines, cleaning protocols and safety measures as set out by the government.”
Anthony said: “There would have been rats wandering around when I was sleeping, crawling on tables & cutlery, sniffing cups, in the bin… Rats carry diseases.”
“At 1.30am I saw a rat come from behind the fridge into view,” he added.
“I talked to security. They moved me into a new room.”
As he changed room, he said another guest asked: “Have you got one in your room as well?”
Anthony said hotel staff have admitted those in other rooms have had similar problems with rodents. There is no cleaning service for the full ten-day stay due to COVID measures.
Anthony’s MP Rachael Maskell said reports of an infestation are “deeply disturbing”.
“These guests feel like prisoners when all they have done is travelled home,” she said.
The Mecure London Healthrow quarantine hotel is rat infested. My constituent has already moved rooms twice; others too. Rats everywhere = a public health risk. Government made him pay £1750. Private profit, not public safety. #refundnow Shut the place down @sajidjavid @PHE_uk
— 💙Rachael Maskell MP (@RachaelMaskell) August 3, 2021
She said she has reported the situation to the Department of Health and Social Care.
A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care said: “Guests should raise any issues directly with the hotel in the first instance, and we expect them to do their utmost to address any concerns.
“Our top priority has always been protecting the public and the robust border and testing regime we have in place is helping minimise the risk of new variants coming into the UK.”